EA Sports' major debut on Nintendo's newest console should be a hit with most soccer fans.
After seeing the somewhat stunted yet still satisfactory Madden NFL 13 huddle onto the field for Wii U, it's time to see what EA Sports can REALLY do with a dedicated sports sim for Nintendo's system – and that's exactly what we get with FIFA Soccer 13. While there are some set-backs that keep it from being as powered a player as it is on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, there's still plenty of foot power behind it, the kind that casual players and loyal soccer pros can easily get behind.
Obviously the biggest draw to this game, at least for some of the ultimate fans, will be the touch-pad integration. Most of the features wrap around management, as you can either watch the action from a distant owner's box of sorts and look at the field around you or switch to another grid, where you can see where players are standing through a grid set-up. From there, you can call upon a defensiveman to follow someone that's carrying the ball (in an attempt to steal it), or set up a perimeter for movement down the field for a potential score. It's a bit deep – and most casual players will ignore it in favor of just fooling around with what's happening in the match – but it's a cool new way to experience a soccer game, something far more fundamental than just the game itself.
Granted, it's nice to have this feature, because a couple of others come up short. For instance, there's no sign of either the EA Sports Football Club – where most of the online challenges and features stem – nor the Ultimate Team, a true staple for soccer fans out there. There is online functionality over the Nintendo Network, and the quick matches are good, but there isn't much to speak of outside of that. Plus, sometimes it can take a while to find a player to go up against. A fully built community, this isn't. At least, not yet.
One other thing – you're probably better off just sticking to the basic controls for FIFA 13. The game does include both shooting and passing on the GamePad, with simple taps and usage of the system's accelerometer when it comes to precision aiming, but it's all too much. You can easily have the ball stolen if you take too long, or miss a shot because you didn't get the right targeting down on it. Just stick with the regular controls and you'll be fine.